Hubei Chime Bells and Peking Opera Perform in Orange County

Los Angeles—Artists from the world renowned Hubei Chime Bells National Chinese Orchestra and China National Beijing Company performed at the Renee and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall, Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa on the eve of the Chinese Lantern Festival, part of Chinese New Year celebration.

Amb. Zhang Ping with the performers (by Keyang Pang)

Audience in the south land of California experienced a dazzling combination of vocal artistry, costumes and acrobatics, along with works that honor centuries-old musical traditions.

The Hubei Chime Bells National Chinese Orchestra opened the concert with works that transport listeners to ancient China with the rich tones of the country’s ancient Imperial Bells and traditional instruments such as the qing, a stone or jade chime; the xun, a vessel flute; and the se, a plucked zither.

Breathtaking to behold in size and sound, the chime bells being performed are replicas of the 2,500-year-old bronze and stone chime bells excavated from the tomb of a Chinese ruler that were discovered in 1978.

Tommy Phillips, president of the Philharmonic Society, greets the performers (by Keyang Pang)

The China National Beijing Opera Company brought a rare opportunity for American audience to experience the quintessence of Chinese culture.

Dressed in traditional costumes with full makeup and accompanied by beautiful music, the members of Troupe One of the China National Beijing Opera Company portrayed scenes from three classic operas: Divergence and Palace of Eternal Life, as well as Uproar in Heaven, a classic Chinese story that follows the adventures of the mischievous Monkey King who wreaks havoc by rebelling against the Jade Emperor.

“Traditional Chinese culture has its unique charm to resonate with American audience,” Ambassador Zhang Ping, Chinese Consul General in Los Angele, told UNE.  “We hope to see more national level art groups from China, and expect high quality cultural exchanges.”

The performance was presented by the Philharmonic Society of Orange County, with the support of the Chinese Consulate General in Los Angeles.